I really enjoyed the conversation we had on Monday about women’s empowerment. Thank you very much to all those who participated in the chat and also those who joined us to follow the conversation. I tried to respond to as many questions as I could within the hour - but the time flew by fast! Below you will find a recap of the most popular questions I received and the common themes discussed. I’ve also included several questions that I did not get to during the hour. We’d love to hear your feedback on our first Twitter chat, any additional comments you have on 5by20 and ideas for chat topics in the future.
Looking forward to chatting with you again soon!
Summary of questions and answers from Monday:
It’s a balance to ensure we are growing
towards that 5 million goal, but we have to make sure we’re developing the
right programs that have the right impact in that community AND are right for
our business. Each has to support the other.
We are working diligently to test, learn and scale the programs that
work. This is the best approach to ensure a lasting legacy that is
As long as there are women entrepreneurs who need help breaking down barriers to success, there is room for more corporations and NGOs to get involved. Investing in women strengthens entire communities and bolsters local, regional and national economies.
Yes! Please visit www.5by20.com. We launched 5by20 in 2010 with 4 key pilot markets and recently announced that it has expanded to 12 countries (Brazil, China, Costa Rica, Egypt, Haiti, India, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, the Philippines, South Africa and Thailand). Many of these countries are considered emerging or developing, but we expect to reach every region of the globe as 5by20 grows exponentially.
The three greatest barriers we see women entrepreneurs face are access to business skills, access to financial services and access to mentors or peer networks. Once you teach a women business skills, it all starts to come together. Her business starts to improve AND she has the ability to teach these skills to other entrepreneurs in her community. One of my favorite examples of this is a woman from South Africa named Mahlehlehonolo Moleko. Once she graduated from our business skills training course, her bakery began to earn an income that she is using to send her son to college. View her TEDxWomen talk here.
We can all – as individuals – continue to share the message that is critical to empower women entrepreneurs. Through spreading the success stories of individual women or joining movements like “Half The Sky”, we continue to raise the visibility of this issue. Higher visibility will lead to more solutions.
If you’d like to see even more of the Twitter chat, search #5by20 on Twitter or click here to see all the tweets. Thanks, again!
Bea Perez is Chief Sustainability Officer at The Coca-Cola Company.